We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

A magnificent reply to an appalling letter

We regard it as deeply inappropriate and dangerous that the UK Parliament would attempt to control who is allowed to speak on our platform or try to earn a living from doing so. Singling out an individual and demanding his ban is even more disturbing given the absence of any connection between the allegations and his content on Rumble. We don’t agree with the behavior of many Rumble creators, but we refuse to penalize them for actions that have nothing to do with our platform.

Although it may be politically and socially easier for Rumble to join a cancel culture mob, doing so would be a violation of our company’s values and mission. We emphatically reject the UK Parliament’s demands.

– Official Rumble response to this appalling letter.

Samizdata quote of the day – worst Prime Minister ever?

Go on, try to remember what Theresa May achieved in politics at all, let alone as prime minister. It’s not easy.

Gawain Towler

Samizdata quote of the day – the Fusion of Technology and Law

But this is not all that the Energy Bill 2023 does, and here we come to a fresher development in the relationship between law and the state. Importantly, Brownsword has recently been suggesting that we are rapidly advancing into the next iteration of law – Law 3.0 – in which law becomes essentially self-executing through technology and, indeed, the very exercise of subjecting human conduct to rules becomes subsumed by technological management. Here, the creation of rules itself will become seen as archaic, with technology providing us with better – more efficient, more rational, more effective – forms of justice than those available to the flawed system of law which we currently respect. The end result (the apotheosis of Law 3.0, as it were), will be the merging of technology with law, such that the requirement for rules to exist will disappear and human conduct will be more or less entirely managed by technology.

David McGrogan

Samizdata quote of the day – ‘Bharat’ is an invented country

Even the name ‘India’, touted by some as a colonial imposition, can be found in texts as ancient as Herodotus’ Geography. By the time of Alexander, ‘India’ was the widely accepted term for the region beyond the Indus River. It is a straightforwardly geographical distribution, widely used for centuries – by no means was it a British invention.

Sam Bidwell

Samizdata quote of the day – friends don’t let friends PUG

Call of Duty (CoD), a video game series published by Activision, has jumped into the murky waters of AI-powered censorship after revealing a new partnership with AI voice moderation tool Modulate ToxMod. This will be built-in to the newest CoD game, Modern Warfare 3, which will be released on November 10th this year. Currently, it is being trailed on Modern Warfare 2 and Call of Duty: Warzone. It will be used for flagging ‘foul-mouthed’ players and identifying hate speech, racial or homophobic language, misogyny and any ‘misgendering’. Players do not have the option to prevent the AI listening in.

Jack Watson

The last bit is not strictly true. The way you can prevent the AI listening is simply not use the in-game voice coms at all. Instead use third party voice apps such as Skype, Team Speak, or whatever. This is easily doable if a team is made up of people who already know each other, known as a ‘premade’.

The opposite of a premade is called a PUG (“pick up group”), i.e. a team of random strangers in a multiplayer online game who meet via an in-game match maker system. Typically a premade is vastly more effective than a PUG & usually wins games far more often for reason that should be obvious.

Samizdata quote of the day – if brains were dynamite…

Nadine Dorries is right in regard to Rishi Sunak: he is an unelected nonentity who is leading his government to annihilation at the next election.

She is wrong about almost everything else. She is behind the disastrous Online Harms Bill, and she seems to have a strange crush on Boris Johnson, the liar and failed prime minister. I confess I have not followed her career closely enough to know she was a net zero fanatic, but if Boris was in favour of it, it is no surprise she was.

In sum, if brains were dynamite, she couldn’t blow out a candle. And she’s probably not the thickest MP out there.

– Commenter JohnK

Samizdata quote of the day – Putin is not a mystery

Putin’s objectives are not an enigma, a mystery, or a riddle. As McKew emphasizes, they have been spelled out again and again in speeches, books, editorial, official documents, journal articles, conferences, interviews, and even in fiction. They have also been written in blood.


Proposing a peace agreement with a party who views such agreements not as binding commitments, but periods in which to rearm is delusional.

Claire Berlinsky

How Putin fooled the Western Left… & influenced some US Republicans

Well worth watching…

Samizdata quote of the day – the technocracy of failure

The greatest trick technocracy ever pulled was convincing the world that it is associated with competence. Technocracy presents itself as government by people who know what they are doing – the ‘adults in the room’, the ‘wise minority in the saddle’ guiding the herd, and so on. In truth, the exact opposite is true: technocracy is always and everywhere doomed to disaster, and our current technocracy is no different. It is a technocracy of failure.

David McGrogan

Read the whole thing, highly recommended.

Samizdata quote of the day – a police kidnapping

The crux of the objection was that I considered the actions of West Yorkshire Police to be akin to an organised crime gang engaged in a kidnap. It’s a strong allegation, which demands some justification, so here goes. Kidnap is a common law offence, made up of four distinct elements. The taking of one person by another… with force….without their consent… and without lawful excuse. The screams of the girl attest to the fulfilment of the first three elements, but what of the fourth? Did the police have a lawful excuse to behave as they did?

Here’s the technical bit: Section 4 and 5 of the Public Order Act 1986 cannot be committed where the suspect (in this case, the girl), and the victim (the officer) are both in the same private dwelling. The clue is in the name. It is the Public Order Act, designed to address alarm, harassment and distress carried out in a public place. For the arrest to have been lawful, the police would need to demonstrate a mistake as to fact. In other words, that they genuinely mistook the hallway and cupboard beneath the stairs in which the girl was hiding for, say, the town hall steps or other public place. Ignorance as to law is not a valid defence. Ever. What the police did was the equivalent of pulling over a car on the verge of breaking the speed limit and arresting the driver for burglary.

Harry Miller

Samizdata quote of the day – understatement of the week

West Yorkshire Police must now justify the officers’ actions in terms of lawful arrest and proportional force. Failure to do so would significantly undermine public trust, especially among people with autism and other disabilities.

Robert Jessel

Unless there is far more to this story than meets the eye, if they cannot justify their actions, at the very least some Plod need to lose their jobs and ideally face prosecution.

Blog kinda sorta exploded…

Sorry for the disturbance in the force, the mystic code gods are working out how to unfuck the blog 😀

That’ll teach me to press the “update” button